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Sights soar high at aircraft competition.

Abu Dhabi While struggling with tough mathematical and scientific principles in engineering classes at college, Saeeda Hussain has thought several times about where she can use all her knowledge.

A competition to design, build and a pilot remote-controlled aircraft gave her the answer.

Saeeda was one of the participants at the first Unmanned Systems Rodeo (USR) in the UAE, which was organised at HCT, Cert Technology Park in Abu Dhabi yesterday.

USR, the first event of its kind in the Middle East, featured the competition for UAE tertiary students. The 11 competing teams from four colleges were judged for their presentation, speed, performance and the endurance of their aircrafts.

The first and second-placed teams which will be announced today will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. and Italy, said Nader Haddad, PR and marketing consultancy manager of Inegma (Institute for Near East and Gulf Military Analysis) which organised the event.

EoACAyTough task'

Saeeda, 21, a first year student of Electronic Engineering at Abu Dhabi Women's college, told Gulf News on the sidelines of the event that she was happy to use the mathematical principles she learned at college to calculate the gravity and momentum of the aircraft. "Balancing the speed and endurance was the tough task," she said.

The students designed and built prototypes of unmanned aircrafts using foam, wood and mechanical parts provided by engineers from Northrop Grumman Corporation (NGC), a US Aerospace Systems company, which co-sponsored the event along Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investment (Adasi). Engineers from HCT, NGC and Adasi assisted the students during the preparation period.


Mohammad Ahmad Al Kodarzi, 24, an engineering management student at Dubai Men's college said though he did not know much about unmanned aircrafts before the competition, it has now become his hobby.

Hamad Ali Mohammad, 24, a mechanical engineering student at Abu Dhabi Men's College, said he and his friends learned that team work could make wonderful results.

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Publication:Gulf News (United Arab Emirates)
Date:May 5, 2011
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